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What’s in a name? Plenty! When it comes to booze sales in Oregon…

The Oregonian photo

The Oregonian photo

A measure coming up on the November ballot asks Oregon voters whether they want liquor to be sold by grocery stores.  Grocery stores have long yearned to sell liquor because it would be a real profit center for them.

But there’s a little problem lurking around in the way the ballot title construes what is actually up for a vote.  The title just adopted by the Oregon Attorney General’s Office reads that with purchase of liquor, assuming the ballot measure passes, consumers will be paying a “sales tax” on it – an extra amount so the state still gets its full cut in the sale.  Right now only state liquor stores sell booze.   But instead of calling the state’s income from it a “fee,” the Oregon AG is calling it a “sales tax.”  And that could sink the grocery industry’s chances of getting their hands on liquor sales – knowing full well how maniacally opposed Oregon voters are to any mention of the term “sales tax.”

The story is in The Oregonian.  Click here.

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